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07253_2003_001.tif Typewriter Patent drawing 6/23/1868Never heard of Christopher Latham Sholes? Don’t feel bad, few people have, but everyone reading this has used his QWERTY keyboard, so if you need someone to blame for putting the alphabet out of alphabetical order, he’s the guy, and today is his day,


Christopher Scholes was a newspaper editor and inventor from Pennsylvania, and presumably a raging dyslexic, who was granted 241 Patent #79,265 for his Typewriting Machine on June 23, 1868.

The first QWERTY keyboard (named for the first 6 letters on the keyboard) resembled a piano keyboard, soon modified to the round keys and levers familiar to anyone old enough to remember manual typewriters and adapted to digital devices today.

Scholes’ machine revolutionized writing of every description, and before you could say typo, all you heard was the clacking of keys, accompanied by wailing and gnashing of teeth throughout the land at the QWERTY keyboard.

•Suggested Activities: Giving the rest of us a break and laying off the CAPS LOCK key.

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